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Africa RISING Program Close-out Event
7 - 9 February, 2023
Alissa Hotel, Accra - Ghana
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  1. Showcase Africa RISING achievements at regional and program level.
  2. Present and critically assess the major research and development results of the program.
  3. Explore opportunities for further scaling of project outputs and outcomes beyond Africa RISING.
  4. Harness key lessons for Africa RISING and sister projects.


  1. Documentation of Africa RISING's results and their transition pathways
  2. Synthesis notes capturing implementation lessons on systems research and SIAF from the perspectives of Africa RISING and other projects like CSISA and SIIL

DAY ONE, 7 February [Tuesday] 
  • 08:30 Registration
  • 09:00 Participant introductions - Facilitators
  • 09:45 Close out event objectives & agenda overview – Peter Thorne
  • 09:50 Opening/welcome remarks
    • Africa RISING Program Coordination Team Chair - Siboniso Moyo, ILRI DDG-R4D Livestock Genetics and Feeds & Forages
    • USAID Ghana Country Mission - Amber Lily Kenny, Deputy Office Director – Economic Growth
    • USAID Washington DC - Jerry Glover, Deputy Director, Center for Agriculture Led Growth
    • Honourable Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture Ghana Ministry - Hon. Mohammed Tufero
  • 10:30 Coffee break and group photo
  • 11:00 Timeline review of the Africa RISING Program with key milestones and achievements - joint presentation by Fred Kizito, Peter Thorne, Carlo Azzarri

12:00 Market Place of project level technologies/achievements (in poster format) organized around three thematic SI entry points: (i) genetic intensification, (ii) ecological intensification, and (iii) socio-economic intensification.

    • Genetic intensification
      • Improved crop varieties (Faba bean with bread wheat) in Ethiopia – Zewdie Bishaw
      • Improved forage varieties in Ethiopia – Melkamu Bezabih
      • Drought tolerant quality protein maize – Patrick Okori
      • High yielding disease resistant groundnut – Patrick Okori
      • Dual purpose sorghum varieties – Folorunso Akinseye
      • Resilient varieties of Tomato – Inviolate Mosha
      • Improved/diseases tolerant vegetable varieties adapted to northern Ghana – Jean Baptiste Tignegre
  • 13:00 - 14:20: Lunch break
  • 14:30 Market Place Cont'd...
    • Ecological intensification
      • Landscape-scale rehabilitation in Ethiopia – Degefie Tibebe
      • Site-specific fertilizer recommendations – Getachew Agegnehu
      • Doubled up legumes – Regis Chikowo
      • Targeting crop sequencing – Regis Chikowo
      • Soil and water conservation in Tanzania – Elirehema Swai
      • Cowpea living mulch in Ghana – Nurudeen Abdul Rahman
      • Contour bunding in Mali – Kalifa Traore
  • 15:30 Coffee break and group photo
    • Socio-economic intensification
      • Feed trough in Ethiopia – Kindu Mekonnen
      • Small scale mechanization (2WT tractors) in Ethiopia – Rabe Yahaya
      • High value fruit trees in Ethiopia – Endalkachew Woldemeskel
      • Technologies for reducing post-harvest losses – Christopher Mutungi
      • Vegetable gardens in Mali – Mahama Saaka
      • Maize shellers in Ghana – Bekele Kotu
      • Advisory services in Ghana and Mali – Fred Kizito
      • Efficient feed utilization through feed troughs in West Africa – Sadat Salifu
  • 16:30 End of day 1
  • 18:30 Welcome Cocktail

DAY TWO, 8 February [Wednesday]
  • 08:30 Overview of Day 2 agenda
  • 08:40 Recap of previous day (Menti excercise)
  • 09:00 Panel interview on implementing the SIAF - Regis Chikowo, Patrick Okori, Jim Hammond, Nurudeen Abdul Rahman & Peter Thorne
  • 10:30 Coffee break
  • 11:00 Data management discussion - Benedict Boyubie, Daniel Mgalla, Birhan Abdulkadir (coordinated by Carlo Azzarri)
  • 11:30 Returns on Investment - Bekele Kotu, Jim Hammond, and Julius Manda (coordinated by Carlo Azzarri)
  • 12:00 Program-wide synthesis study results - Carlo Azzarri
  • 13:00 Lunch
  • 14:30 Country table discussions to reflect on AR Program-wide synthesis results
  • 15:00 Fishbowl: Partnerships in Scaling – Lessons from selected scaling partners - Million Gebreyes (ILRI), Haroon Sseguya (IITA), Patrick Kiao (Mwanga), Betty Maeda (frmr. USAID Tanzania), Nana Ntiamoah (Degas), Aminata Coulibaly (Mali Mark)
  • 15:30 Coffee break
  • 16:45 Wrap up day 2

DAY THREE, 9 February [Thursday]

  • 08:30 Overview of day 3 agenda
  • 08:40 Response to some of the concerns about the program-wide synthesis study results - Carlo Azzarri
  • 09:00 Experiences and lessons in harnessing diversity and research partnerships in projects like the Africa RISING partnerships? – Mateete Bekunda
  • 09:45 Building upon Africa RISING successes - F.Kizito
  • 10:15 Coffee break
  • 10:30 What to expect in the upcoming end of program report - Jonathan Odhong
  • 11:00 Panel discussion: How to conduct systems research and showcase value – experiences from Africa RISING, CSISA, and One CGIAR Mixed Farming Systems Initiative. Panel: Peter Thorne (AR), Santiago Lopez (Mixed Farming Systems Initiative),Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon, Jerry Glover (USAID) - facilitated by Fred Kizito
  • 12:30 Remarks by USAID - Jerry Glover
  • 13:00 Lunch
  • 14:30 Fun debrief exercise with all participants
  • 15:30 Reflections by the Regional Project Managers - Fred Kizito & Peter Thorne/Kindu Mekonnen
  • 15:00 Closing remarks
    • High level leadership from the lead centers
      • Siboniso Moyo, ILRI
      • Robert Asiedu, IITA
  • 16:00 Wrap up of event

NOTES[edit | edit source]

  • Day ONE [7 February 2023]

Participants introduction

- Through the Mapping exercise, the facilitators asked participants some reflective questions on the key regional project achievements that they would like to invest in if the regional groups would be given USD 50 Million fund.
  • East and Southern Africa Region
- Integrated land management, Carbon on farm which is related to carbon sequestration and growing trees conserving the carbon,
- Soil health,
- Climate and economic resilience that will be addressed through genetic intensification,
- Good agronomic practices,
- Market use and gender
- Institutional capacity building,
- Food safety.
  • Ethiopian Highlands Region
- Problem identification through research for development phase and mainstreaming this into national systems.
- They were able to create a lot of demand for many of their technologies for both in core livestock and natural resource management and they think now are ready to scale through business pipeline development, private business models and institutional development.
- They have research products generated and they target to deliver them to more partners through capacity development and knowledge sharing.
  • West Africa Region
- Crop-livestock integration (including breeding, rotation, compost production, the integration through soil and water conservation, etc.),
- Strengthening partnership by putting together all stakeholders and partners to transform the mission to donors or politician,
- The application innovative platform with partners,
- Enhancing nutrition.

Close out event objectives & agenda overview – Peter Thorne

Peter Throne highlighted the meeting objectives:
1. Showcasing achievements at the regional, individual project levels, but also some of programs driven activities that were engaged.
2. Research achievements that the research team and partnership have achieved.
3. Discussing about 11 years of sustainable intensification, what does it means?
4. Harnessing some of the key lessons, some of the research lessons, as well as some of the key operational lessons.

Opening/Welcome remarks

  • Africa RISING Program Coordination Team Chair - Siboniso Moyo, ILRI DDG-R4D Livestock Genetics and Feeds & Forages
- Moyo appreciated the support of the USAID leadership that has been part of Africa RISING program, recognizing team effort and support from Rob Petram, Jerry Clover and Zach Stewart and many others. She highlighted outputs and milestones that Africa RISING has achieved.
1. Africa RISING is a good resource for learning, particularly about Sustainable Intensification in Agriculture system.
2. Opportunity to practice some of scaling approaches and working with different partnership arrangement.
3. The program has built capacity to many students in the continent.
- Moyo noted the way forward for the Africa RISING program the good work where she noted the One CGIAR initiatives where some of Africa RISING technologies will continue.
  • Honourable Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture Ghana Ministry - Hon. Mohammed Tufero
- On behalf of the government of Ghana, he expressed his appreciation to United states Agency (USAID) for funding the Africa RISING program in advancing agriculture sector. He noted that, currently they are looking at strengthening this partnership through ventures and engagements.
- He thanked Africa RISING team for the great work done especially in improving livelihoods of farmers, developing technologies for farmers, build capacities of 10 PhD students, 12 masters students and 5 bachelor students. The program also brought together 15 strategic partnerships both private and public entities as it has eight CGIAR centers in Ghana. “Although Africa RISING is ending, but its legacy will never end but live for many years through OneCGIAR research Initiative and that contributes to sustainable Intensification of mixed farming system,” he said.
- The government is looking on ways to see the benefits of the beneficial collaboration among the CGIAR centers and among partners across initiatives to address hunger, poverty and malnutrition. The new initiative of mixed farming system will go into previous successes obtained with Africa RISING program to make it function effectively.

Timeline review of the Africa RISING Program with key milestones and achievements - joint presentation by Fred Kizito, Peter Thorne, Carlo Azzarri

  • Fred Kizito presentation
Fred highlighted that working as a team/family was the main reason for the success of Africa RISING, the team had partnership experiences across six countries.
He noted that with in the SI-MFS initiative, there is an opportunity on how to better engage agronomy, monitoring, technological innovation such as ICT, but also improving resilience within both systems, as well as the adaptive

capacity of the systems and community to cope with it.

He noted that the theory of change was very simple, that when they developed demand driven research, it helped them in deploying technologies that allow better efficiency, as well as better productivity.
Good accountability among partners has led the program to be more successful. He noted that phase one, was interesting. The quick wins became tangible researchable product that they built on the gaps from, and resulted the partnership base to be expanded.
He highlighted the key aspect about phase 2 that largely based on changing the mindset on partnerships, to integrate the works they have and to think about the framework that will allow them to move into integrated solution in farm level, at the community, landscape level and beyond.
He noted that the approaches from phase one and two where the phase one was about technology identification and in phase two, they thought about how these technologies be taken to scale, including how they can engage scaling partners and private sectors that can take these to another level. Thus, some of the key intervention and outputs that took place during the phase one was enhancing food safety, reducing soil loss, improving livelihood, improving household nutrition, developing decision support tools, enhancing livestock activities, integrated soil management, etc.
He noted that the sustainable intensification assessment framework (SIAF), where the Ethiopian team took the advantage of sustainable intensification framework to help rural households, as well as West Africa team used it in scaling and technology identification. He explained that SIAF is a connecting tissue and contributed a lot to the Africa RISING works.
His key message was that Africa RISING is leaving the knowledge product that can be used by the target audiences with sustainable intensification for mixed farming system initiative as well.
  • Comments/discussion emerged from the presentation
Birhanu noted the operational challenges to run the project for 12 years especially on annual budget where the support given by the good management and from other project leads was helpful to continue with project. The second challenge was the technology management parks especially in West Africa. The other challenges are the absences of the economists and gender experts at the beginning of project, On the second question, he noted that if the teams could have SIAF at the beginning, it could have helped to include the mechanization, gender and social economic research and bringing development actors during planning stage and the capacity building strategy to engage graduate students. If USD 15 million would be provided, it would be better to address the strategies
Participant 2: He noted that, they were able to put together the indication come from research to the benefit of private sectors for the innovations to be picked up. Having more systematic and more simplicity about the partnership building and engaging with partners since beginning pushed them to look for framework to assess their activities on the ground in SIAF did a good well.
Participant 3: He emphasized on recognizing the efforts and contribution done by partners particularly on the challenges related to operational management. He also explained that, they discussed on Climate information services since nowadays there are many data tools developed to support all technologies that they are trying to implement. He said that there is a need to put much effort into this direction.
Participant 4: Gender inclusiveness is among achievements. He highlighted the need of having insurance policies so that all the activities that they have been doing with farmers to create an insurance to them.
Participant 5: He talked about the concept of integration, as it was understood more later in the project and started to be applied in the phase two, which affected the analysis interms of the system approach. He also talked about the seed system as there is a need to engage more seed suppliers of many crops since the challenge was much based on well-known crops like maize and groundnuts, etc, to help farmers easily understand where to access the seeds. The other part he talked about was on the social domain, as they did not collect enough data in these domains noting that there is a need to do better on this component.
Participant 6: He highlighted achievements that were not mentioned including changes in food security, income and reduction in a poverty level. Replying on a question two he noted that, to be more successful there is a need of conducting comprehensive stakeholder analysis and agribusiness landscape mapping to bring more actors on board.
Participant 7: She noted that Africa RISING gave scientists room to maneuver, flexibility and freedom to design and implement research especially developing scaling innovations.
Participant 8: Africa RISING has succeeded to change behavior of people through nutrition component. Also, Africa RISING gave preference to Malian students to be engaged in PHD studies.
Participant 9: He highlighted areas of improving including to improve mechanization, post-harvest, farm management, as well as social economic intensification including linking farmers to the market, access to finance and other access to information.
Participant 10: He noted that on the achievements, the farmers must be invited to give testimonies themselves. Then on what they could have done differently, he noted that, they could have scaling technologies to the south midway rather than concentrating or focusing all the technologies in the north whereby this would have given Africa RISING the wider coverage interms of technological dissemination.
Participant 11: The issue that has been raised is innovation platform that bringing together all partners and stakeholders for technology demonstrator validation in scaling. The second one is how to bring in together social innovations and technological innovations.
Participant 12: On things that were not mentioned in achievements, is about internal studies on impact evaluation at each stage or phase of activities. On what to be done in future, he suggested that, they have to look on agroforestry integration into much of their activities.

Market Place of project level technologies/achievements

  • Genetic intensification
Poster 1: Resilient vegetable varieties for improved productivity and income in Tanzania
Question: The yield report, is it irrigation or rain-fed system?
Response: It is both in irrigated and rain-fed areas, but the experiment was done during the rainy season
Question: During the rainy season, there is a lot of production. What do farmers do with the reduced price?
Response: This is a season which farmers use to produce their vegetables, hence we also opted for introducing the varieties in the same season with that of farmers production calendar
Question: What is the unit of analysis for your experiment?
Response: We use small proportion of farmers field, but we translate it to productivity per acre
Question: How do you increase shelve life of the tomato
Response: We introduce a zero energy cold chamber, a freezing system and also solar driers are also interventions we use.
Poster 2: New groundnut variety for improved resilience in central Tanzania
Question: Did you do market demand analysis?
Response: Yes, that is what we do in PVS and product profiling during our breeding process
Question: In Ghana farmers face certified seeds for a wider adoption, is this problem the same in Tanzania too?
Response: Yes, there is under investment in legumes and open pollinated crops. We are working with emerging seed companies to support high quality seed production
Poster 3: Dual-purpose sorghum varieties tested in Mali
Question: What would be the way forward for the local variety?
Response: We will do more trials, to include local varieties in our selection
Question: Have you disaggregated preferences by gender?
Response: Yes, we did, but not presented here
Question: How about quality of biomass?
Response: The improved varieties have higher digestibility
Question: Do you see penalties for either biomass or grain production?
Response: Yes, we saw that for the local varieties.
Poster 4: Improved feed and forage innovations in Ethiopia
Question: Do farmers produce these forages at a commercial scale? Have you seen food-feed forages as well? which once do you think could scale to other countries?
Response: Sweet Lupin is a food-feed crop. Oat is also food-feed. Cowpea is food-feed crop.
Question: What is your evidence of labor reduction?
Response: Women are involved in feeding livestock. When they have access to technologies such as feeding trough, this reduces their labor demand.
Poster 5: Improving food security and household income in Tanzania through drought tolerant quality protein maize
Question: How to sustain seed production, why doesn’t Meru company contribute to the variety maintenance?
Response: Seed companies have their own priorities; they focus more on what brings money immediately.
Poster 6: Improved crop varieties in Ethiopia
Question: How do you tackle disease problem?
Response: We introduce new crops to break the cycle, farmers also use packages
Question: Seed, who supplies it?
Response: We produce seeds with communities. There are no enough companies to supply formal seeds.
Question: What is the level of availability of early generation seeds?
response: We are working with the research system who are producing early generation seeds.
Question: How many farmers adopt these varieties?
Response: We do not have such a figure, but we have figures for total number of farmers who benefited from these technologies.

  • Ecological intensification
Poster 1: Developing agroforestry options using counter bunding technology in southern Mali
Question: What type of the fodder trees are they? Do they fix nitrogen?
Response: Yes, they are nitrogen fixing. These are trees chosen by farmers themselves
Question: Seedling production for scaling, have you seen a problem around that?
Response: We train farmers how to produce seedlings. Women farmers did more than what we trained them, expanding their seedling business into fruit tress as well.
Question: Have you seen a difference in the nitrogen fixing fodders?
Response: Yes, where we have nitrogen fixing tree species, crop production is significantly better
Poster 2: Promoting climate resilient agriculture through in-situ rainwater harvesting
Question: How long before the yield benefits drops down with the length of tight ridges?
Response: For four season, the tight ridges perform well as long as the soil texture is fine
Question: What time within the crop cycle should the ridges made?
Response: We do them once and they keep them for years as residual
Question: How about water logging condition?
Response: This technology is mainly useful in moisture stress areas
Question: is this mechanized or is it done manually? How does one do this for a large area?
Response: We are using ox drawn implement, combining with hand hoes
Poster 3: Creating multi-functional climate smart landscapes in Ethiopia
Question: What is climate smart landscape? How does it creates income, improve nutrition etc?
Response: Climate smart landscape, in Ethiopian context land size is too small, less than 0.25 ha. Landscapes are a good way to go, as you can address the three pillars of climate smart agriculture. Some of the interventions such as bee keeping could create job and increase income.
Question: How are the gully rehabilitated?
Response: When we select the interventions we bring stakeholders that would help us prioritize interventions. The gully rehabilitation depends on the niche, combining physical and biological.
Question: Who is the end user of this tool/approach? When you scale out what are the mechanisms of scaling? What kind of governance do you set up for scaling?
Response: The audience is the extension system. Scaling requires bringing stakeholders engaged in the system, helping actors to develop by-laws and all.
Poster 4: In search of crop diversity and meaningful crop rotation
Question: Where is the place of livestock in this small land?
Response: This is goat livestock system, we are now introducing cow-peas for feed
Question: The time to build up the fertility level takes time, how do you convince farmers?
Response: If you do more mono cultures and you intensify like this, you are not missing. They will get the immediate benefits of changing crops and that benefits encourage them to wait for the soil benefits.
Question: Which of the system was beneficial?
Response: In variably, all the once we tried are better than the mono planning
Poster 5: Validation and demonstration of site-specific nutrient management
Participants did not have questions for this poster.
Poster 6: Cowpea living mulch for improving soil quality, food and nutritional security in Norther Ghana
Question: What amount of of the cowpea do you use for mulching?
Response: We use live mulching with cowpea
Question: What are the ratio of land coverage by the two crops?
Response: it is 100% of use of land
Question: Why is the technology not widely adopted?
Response: It is a matter of social/cultural issue, farmers are so fond of their maize, they are afraid of inter-cropping. We need to break this. Otherwise, cowpea has good seed system and we use local variety, hence no problem of scaling cowpea.
Poster 7: Improvement of inter-cropping efficiency using contour banding technology in southern Mali
Question: Why do you use soybean, not cowpea
Response: What we want to do is create business for the women. Cowpea is for eating, but soybean is business
Poster 8: Soil and water conservation research and farmer capacity building in Northern Ghana
Question: Who are the people who joined the training?
Response: Anybody involved in this can join.
Question: How do you attribute the benefits to the impacts?
Response: We measured the results before and after the interventions

  • Socio-economic intensification
Poster 1: Air-tight grain storage in Tanzania
Question: Did you make the metallic silos or you bought them?
Response: They were manufactured by a trained maker
Question: Did you compare with traditional silos?
Response: The traditional silo is not easily to clear, so we did not include it as something to promote
Question: On dietary diversity, did you see access to diverse food?
Question: What makes the silos a technology?
Response: Hermetic storage are the technology
Comment: It is clear how the technology leads to increased dietary diversity
Response: When you have sufficient storage, you will get better income and then that could lead to better dietary diversity.
Question: Who were the targets and how did they access the technologies?
Response: We had a seed kind of access, where we provided initial access, but latter they were able to access it from the market
Poster 2: Efficient feed utilization using improve feed trough
Comment: A partner called UDS is missing in the presentation
Question: Is there a way this technology can be accessed from the technology park and used to train farmers?
Response: That depends on location, some locations the technology parks are tacit. For some locations, farmers want their lands back.
Question: Have you seen this implemented/taken up by farmers own investment?
Response: Some used it, modifying the design
Question: Are the troughs for specific livestock types?
Response: In Northern Ghana, farmers wanted it for small ruminants, but it is possible to use them to large ruminats as well
Question: How is the cost, how scalable is it?
Response: The one with iron sheet is a bit expensive

Poster 3: Feed trough and feed storage innovations in Ethiopia
Question: Is the feed trough robust to handle cattle, the feed storage, how much can it cost?
Response: The innovation of the feed storage is it has a raised bed. The cost is around 10,000 birr. The feed trough is around 100 USD
Question: For the cattle, is it for dairy or others?
Response: It works for all
Question: Do you have data on contribution of the trough to feed quality and eventually improving productivity?
Response: Yes, we have some data comparing the feed stored outside and stored in the store
Question: The feed storage with wholes, won’t it allow rain in?
Response: This would require additional sheet over
Question: How did you reach 3000, and what does it take to scale this to 3,000,000?
Response: This figures were achieved through partnership with public partners. They used project money to support scaling work.

Poster 4: Enhancing smallholder farmers access to mechanization through the group business model: The case of maize shelling machines in Ghana
Question: How do the groups generate finance for their group?
Response: The condition we gave them was to generate finance to get the machine. Then they collect service provision money from their members and non-members

Poster 5: How Africa RISING Post harvest technologies are transforming lives in Tanzania
Comment: The way we are presenting our arguments could be made more stronger, for example your work enhanced the agency of your people, you also enhanced gainful employment by the youth. We need to capture these and make our arguments stronger
Question: I am interested to know the technologies you worked on, the way it is presented is broad
Response: The first poster gives the high level impacts, this poster is about giving a story for a different audience.

Poster 6: High value fruit trees in Ethiopia
Question: In Ghana Avocado production is seasonal. Have you planned to do something on shelve life?
Response: Avocado is type A and B, you can plant these two to increase yearly supply. But it is also possible to link with industries to process and increase shelve life
Response: How come some farmers did not get income, like opportunity cost of eating it at home
Response: Sure, that can be reported
Comment: You can expand your argument to opportunity cost, which will help you sell the innovation. You can quantity this even at national level and make your story stronger.

Poster 7: Small scale mechanization in Ethiopia
Question: How can we diversity the services of the machines?
Response: Sure, we added a number of services to the tractors
Question: How did you do the validation and scaling work?
Response: We did the validation of the technology through demonstration of the different services. We then compare the results with conventional approaches. These processes are then documented.
Question: How about the cost?
Response: The total cost may range from 2000-10000 USD. This may not be affordable, that is why we link it with service providers and link it with credit service.

  • Day TWO [8 February 2023]

  • Day THREE [9 February 2023]

Response to some of the concerns about the program-wide synthesis study results - Carlos Azzarri

- For the case of Ethiopia the results were in line with expectation. However, to look at the situation more, the team should refine and verify the data and that is something they were doing.
- There is a list of technology park adoption; farmer field school demonstration, method of delivering technologies. Among the challenge is that they didn’t collect data before the harvest that’s why they couldn’t collect good data on harvest.
- Moreover, Carlos talked about the diversification. However, he doesn’t think it's necessarily inconsistent with the increasing yield because people are less diversified.
- There are some Africa RISING successes in Ghana, but the team does not have accurate results since there are some villages that were dropped, 13 villages from the region out of 25 villages in phase one. So unfortunately the information was missed out, the plan is to do the analysis for Ghana by excluding these villages and see how the results are going to change particularly on the innovation that were demonstrated during phase one.
- Improved crop varieties versus recycle seed; He noted that they will include the data. Also, there was a strong push on P jump in Tanzania that was not captured in the results and also they have the information of pigeon pea that they are looking at and would be included.

Experiences and lessons in harnessing diversity and research partnerships in projects like the Africa RISING partnerships?

  • Mateete Bekunda presentation
- There was a consistent funding from USAID that helped the project to continue.
- The strong partnerships that kept communicate in every aspect of the project. The local partnership and implementers who helped scientists from across the globe to do activities on the ground. These people were trained to address different disciples.
- Exchange visits were very important
- By the end of March, Africa RISING would have produced more than 200 journal publications, ESA has also produced the handbook.
- These are what the chief scientists see as the highlights of the program, but we also we welcome comments and suggests that you think would be good to document.


Ramadjita: Thank you for the nice and clear presentation about partnership. Yesterday I was interviewed by the team here, they asked me of keys words that characterized Africa RISING. And one of them I mentioned was partnership. But not all things are rosy, I think we should bring out the challenges of partnership. You cannot talk of mutually beneficial or equal partnership if the other partner is weak. We agree that we did well in partnership but we are talking of our NARS colleagues who are weak (not negatively), but they were most of the time financially challenged to make things done and CGIAR was wearing a big hat as supporters. The solution is the partnership can work if the countries and governments can invest in research and make the NARS stronger, use the donors funding as supporters. Let's challenge ourselves by bringing our NARS colleagues up and this can only be done by our countries.
Irmgard: Not everything went well, I do not think Mateete said that the partnerships were equal, but I would say there were differences in the strengths of the partners (their institutional, intellectual, financial), but the partners grew through these partnerships, they became stronger and there was institutional improvement to the partner institution and I think the scientists benefited. We also had drop out of partners after a year or two years because not every institution could follow our pace, through was maybe due to some differences in institutional cultures and ways of working, ours had different priorities.
From administrative point of view, Mateete emphasized we had annual fund deliveries, this means we had to do annual contracts with partners which was immense contrary activities. We had annual reports which were different, and partners had different reporting system. These were all cumbersome but it was worthy.
Miriam: I was wondering whether there are lasting partnerships that are beyond Africa RISING
Fred: Yes they are, these are taken through the initiative of SI-MFS, excellency in agronomy and UKAMA Ustawi
Irmgard(additional): There has been staff who were trained through Africa RISING who are still working with the institutions, these are the lasting partnerships that still remain.
Birhanu: Apart from the partnership, one of the component was to reach a certain number of direct and indirect beneficiaries. Can you say something about the progress in achieving that and what are the lessons learnt from it for the future work?
Bekunda(response): What you just asked was in yesterday's presentation but in terms of reaching out to development partners and farmers, we have the number but I do not have them on head. But we are writing a paper on scaling and since what we are writing has the data until 2020, where we had reached about 900,000 farmers/households. But by the time we end in March, we should have gone beyond a million because some of our partners are continuing working with development partners to reach many farmers. In that situation we were providing backstops than research although we could probably design some research activities after getting information from our consumers that there was a problem, then we could research on that but reaching those partners was more on backstopping science on how to spread the technologies than doing research.
'Million': I really like the point you mentioned, as a social scientist I have been struggling to articulate in some of the inputs of things we have been writing. We can come up with some thematic areas that would help us to write up. For example whether partnership can be deliberately planned or is it a gradual learning process? and come up with case studies from regions. USAID was a generous and flexible funder that gave us room to experiment on what works and what does not work. The site coordination mechanism was plenty, exchange visits, capacity building. These are all builds up on partnership. All we need is to find thematic areas, put theoretical arguments and bring country examples. All these would make a good report or a journal. Missing points are on managing partners expectations which has been challenging, we struggled to explain that this was the research money and that we expected that some resources needed to be collected. In Ethiopia we managed to create strong local level partnerships but failed to have high level partnership, this was barrier because in some cases of scaling we needed some decision making support from the high level partnership. The diversity we have built have some short coming, if other partners were involved in earlier stage we could have very good outcome. ie finance institutes, media engagement. I think these should be considered in the initiatives.
Kalifa: A partnership should be sustainable in its implementation, we need to take to consideration on the governments priorities and objectives so that we get the government's support during and after the program.
Comment: Do you plan to have some partnership recommendations that would be documented for the benefit of the countries and other partners
Bekunda: We are striving to do this, documenting these outputs. But have all these ideas to bring them out. Moreover, the program did not focus more on the policy because it was a difficult part for as to address and we did this deliberately

Building upon Africa RISING successes

  • Fred Kizito presentation
The way we have been discussing over the couple of days, it is very easy for one to lose track and think some sections are duplicative but we have tried to ensure that these sections are informing us on moving forward in relation to ongoing initiatives.
Africa RISING as you have heard, it has built vibrate the inter-CGIAR, governmental as well as non governmental collaborations. It had arena of crop technologies, has strong synergies across disciplines, consistent buying from the donor because they knew what we were doing. But moving forward, what we are thinking is to kind of share with you some successes we think of harnessing the rich lessons that Africa RISING has done, this can be through the ongoing works like initiatives or bilateral projects to benefit from.
We believe in public good, there is a lot of data that can be added value on considering the different interpretations of the data scientists. We believe data value to expansive and elastic and its interpretation can deliver different facets for different audiences.